Africa Eats

The coronavirus pandemic brings more than a healthcare crisis to Africa, it brings disruptions to the food supply chain that will likely cause widespread hunger and starvation.

The food system is already far from ideal, with (at least) 40% of that food never being eaten due to post-harvest losses (Rockefeller Foundation studies).

Adding to these issues are the friction of closed borders, lockdowns, and lost revenues from the best paying customers: hotels, restaurants, supermarkets, and safaris.

Pre-pandemic, there was far too much friction in the early-stage financial markets to fund the food/ag supply chain. Now these food companies are essential services and the only chance to prevent widespread hunger.

A solution for all these issues is Africa Eats, a holding company with a diverse set of African food/ag companies supporting hundreds of thousands of smallholder farmers, feeding millions of Africans.

An agile holding company that can efficiently put capital to work to keep the food supply running.

Africa Eats does not try solving this problem from scratch, but instead begins with 27 fledglings (graduates) of Fledge, the global network of conscious company accelerators. 27 young, for-profit, growing companies chosen from thousands as most likely to succeed, with impact embedded in their product or service, and who have all received two months of intense training, capital, and follow-on support. 27 companies which in 2019 earned over $7 million in aggregate revenues and which worked directly with over 100,000 smallholder farmers.

Contact us if you would like more information.

Latest stories

Podcast; CEO Roundtable bridging Asia

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Africa Eats is based in Africa, not Asia, but David Kim wanted to hear the story and share it with his global audience.

Luni’s backstory starts the episode, Why Africa at 29:00, Africa Eats at 38:30

Listen as a podcast: Apple • Google • Amazon

Capital Efficiency

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Most early-stage and growth-stage startup investors focus on valuation, and the question of whether the investee’s valuation can grow by an order of magnitude or more in the next decade. At Africa Eats, we do look at that, but we focus even more on how efficient our investees are with the money we provide them. How efficient is their use of capital? Specifically, we compute a simple ratio...

Step 3 is a Truck

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How do you get from problem to solution to profitable company in Africa? Like everywhere else, it’s complicated, but the third step is simple. Step 1, find a problem and develop a solution that customers will pay for. For Africa Eats, that problem is most often two sided, lack of demand by smallholder farmers and lack of supply by formal and informal restaurants and retailers. Step 2...

Hunger, Poverty, and Finance — SDGs 2, 1, and 0

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Africa Eats is tackling three big problems outlined by the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. Specifically: #2 Hunger, #1 Poverty, and an unstated #0 Finance. The first two should be obvious given the food & agriculture focus of Africa Eats, but to be explicit: #2 Hunger Not every African is able to eat three meals per day. Not every African receives all the nutrition...

Debt repayable as Equity

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Africa Eats is an investment holding company with numerous operational and financial innovations. Of the latter is our novel form of loans repayable with equity. Typical early-stage and growth-stage investors focus on building a portfolio of equity investments or they provide debt, not both. What is different about Africa Eats is that we intend to own our investees forever. We thus focuses on...

Reliable, 100% Renewable Electricity

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A common issue facing processing and manufacturing companies in Africa is the lack of reliable electricity. Time and money are lost every time the power goes out. Food is spoiled. Growth is held back. Here in the 2020s solar is now an affordable solution. Specifically battery-backed solar, running 24hrs on solar power with the grid used only as a backup. That may sound expensive, but given the...

Holdco, the better investment structure

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Africa Eats is not yet a year old, but the choice of holdco is already showing its benefits over a traditional venture capital fund. Did you know the first-ever modern venture capital “fund” was not a fund, but a public holding company?  American Research and Development.  Boston.  1946. The reason the limited partnership structure became the norm is that the founders of ARD...

Agribusiness in unprecedented times

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KPMG and AGRA have published an outlook on Agribusiness in Africa based on data and conversations with 137 companies across Africa. This a great overview of the challenges that face the agriculture sector in Africa, both in general plus the added issues created by the pandemic. The report includes 10 priorities. Half of these are related to financing. Africa Eats address most of these directly...

Investments #2, #3, #4, #5, and #6

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We’ve previously talked about having too many investment opportunities. That is still true despite making five more investments this week. #2 – Essential Bean by Kalahari Honey We said our top priority for investing was to mitigate hunger and the most direct and impactful opportunities we’ve seen is Essential Bean, a new subsidiary of Kalahari Honey in Botswana. Botswana closed...

Investment #1

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We’ve previously talked about having too many investment opportunities. That is true. But that didn’t stop us from making our first investment. #1 – Agro Supply Urgency drove a loan to Agro Supply. The company sells seeds and other agricultural inputs to over 7,000 Ugandan farmers. Trouble is, the company needs to pay the seed company upon pick-up, but doesn’t get paid by...

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